IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT - For information about the Biden-Harris Student Debt Relief Plan, Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) limited-time waiver expiring October 31, 2022 and Income Driven Repayment (IDR) CLICK HERE.
How we collect information
We collect personally identifiable information that you provide to us by email, website forms, or other electronic means. Personally identifiable information is information that can specifically identify you, such as your name, phone number, address, email address, date of birth, income, account number, Social Security number, or driver’s license number. If you email us at email@example.com (email contact links on our website use this address), we will automatically receive your email address. We will use it to respond to you by email and to send information about VSAC to you via social media and/or other electronic means.
We collect information related to your use of our website using HTTP cookies, Adobe Flash cookies, web beacons, and log information. When you visit our website, we collect information including, but not limited to, your domain name, your internet Protocol (IP) address, internet sites that linked you to our website, the browser you use, and the pages of our websites that you view. We may store this information in our website logs. This information helps us to determine what kind of information is most useful to our website visitors. We do not collect personally identifiable information about you from your visit to the website unless you provide it to us.
We may receive information about you from third parties. This may include information about your interactions with our service providers or your use of our web applications, including our social networking applications or pages. We may combine information collected about you through one VSAC service with other information collected through another VSAC service or information collected through our service providers.
How We Use Information
We use the information you provide to respond to your request for information from VSAC; process loan and grant applications; service your account; contact you with service updates, marketing information, or reminders; comply with legal or regulatory requirements; measure, improve, and customize our services; fulfill other technical, logistical, financial, tax, legal, regulatory, compliance, administrative functions; and provide customer service.
We also use clear GIFs, pixel tags, web beacons, and information gathered from logs to monitor website performance; improve website design, functionality, and security; and assemble web analytics and activity trends. Pixel tags are one-pixel, transparent images located in an email, webpage, or other message that may be used when you are served advertisements by us or interact with advertisements you receive from third parties. web beacons are objects embedded into web pages that allow us to determine whether and for how long users view web pages. You may stop your browser from accepting web beacons. Your browser may have add-ons that may help you block web beacons. However, you may have limited functionality if you block cookies or web beacons set by our website. We use these primarily to identify users, monitor website traffic, and review marketing response rates.
Online Behavioral Advertising
Online behavioral advertising (known as “OBA” or “internet-based advertising”) involves the collection of information from a computer or other device about a visitor’s web browsing activity across non-affiliated websites to allow us to deliver advertisements based on that visitor’s website browsing history, including, but not limited to, web pages viewed, search terms used, or the manner in which you navigate a website. Companies we work with may place cookies on your devices and use related tracking technologies to support our OBA efforts. If you do not want your information collected and used by the companies involved in our OBA efforts, you can opt out by following the OBA Opt-Out procedure.
Opting Out of Online Behavioral Advertising
We provide two (2) ways you may opt out of OBA involving our advertisements on third-party websites. You may opt out through Network Advertising Initiative opt out page. To opt out, please follow the instructions located at http://optout.networkadvertising.org/#!/
How We Share Personal Information
We do not share your personally identifiable information except as authorized by you or otherwise permitted by law. For example, we may share your personally identifiable information with individuals and companies we use to perform services on our behalf including, but not limited to, marketing assistance, data analytics, data processing, sending postal mail, email or text messages, customer service, and collections. Any service providers we use must agree to keep such information confidential and not use it for any purpose we do not authorize. We may also share your information with schools, guarantors, and other government agencies if necessary to process your application for a grant or loan.
VSAC’s websites do not respond to “Do-Not-Track” settings or other mechanisms that provide the ability to exercise choice regarding the collection of personally identifiable information of your online activities over time and across third-party websites or online services.
Use and Sharing of information Relating to Social Networks
Please remember that when you interact with social networking applications or pages, you may have privacy controls at your disposal. When you publish content or information using a public setting on these social networking sites, you may be allowing everyone, including people off of those social networking sites, to access and use that information, and to associate it with you.
If personally identifiable information is accessed through our website, it is encrypted before it is transmitted over the internet. To protect your personally identifiable information, we use technical and physical safeguards and train our employees.
Children's Online Privacy
We do not knowingly collect information from children under the age of 13. We will delete any information from our systems if we learn that is from a child under the age of 13. Please visit the FTC’s website at www.ftc.gov to learn more about protecting children online.
Links to other sites
If you have questions about this website, please contact us.
PRIVACY ACT NOTICE
If you apply for a Vermont grant, section 7(b) of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 522a) requires that when any federal, state, or local government agency requests an individual to disclose his/her Social Security number, that individual must also be advised whether that disclosure is mandatory or voluntary, by what statutory or other authority the number is solicited, and what uses will be made of it. Accordingly, Incentive Grant and Part-time Grant applicants are advised that disclosure of their Social Security numbers is and has been a requirement and condition of applying for an Incentive Grant and Part-time Grant since 1966.
VSAC will use an applicant's Social Security number to identify the applicant, to ensure the information concerning the application is properly recorded and filed, to certify attendance and status at college, and to identify the applicant/student for making accurate grant program award payments.
Section 7(a)(2) of the Privacy Act provides that an agency may continue to require the disclosure of an individual’s Social Security number where the agency required this disclosure under statute or regulations prior to January 1, 1975, in order to verify the identity of the individual. Since 1966, applicants have been required to provide Social Security numbers, and all subsequent application forms have required applicants to submit their Social Security numbers. On June 17, 2019, the VSAC Board of Directors adopted regulations that authorize the Grant/Scholarship program to withdraw a student’s application from consideration for failure to provide required information.
In addition, based upon the same authority, VSAC also requires parents’ Social Security numbers on the grant application. The parents’ Social Security numbers will be used by VSAC in each year in which the applicant applies for a grant to verify the parents’ income with the Vermont Department of Taxes as required in 16 VSA S2843(b) or to obtain copies of U.S. income tax returns as authorized by the parents’ signature on the Vermont Incentive Grant and Part-time Grant applications.
If you apply for an education loan through VSAC, the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a) requires that the following notice be provided.
The authority for collecting the requested information from and about you is Section 484(a)(4)(B) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended [20 U.S.C. 1091(a)(4)(B)]. You are advised that participation in the Federal Family Education Loan Program is voluntary, but the requested information is necessary for participation.
The principal purpose of this information is to verify your identity, to determine your program eligibility and benefits, to permit the servicing of your loan(s), and, in the event it is necessary, to locate you and to collect on your loan(s) if it becomes delinquent or defaulted.
The routine uses of this information include its disclosure to federal, state, or local agencies, to private parties such as relatives, present and former employers, business and personal associates, to guaranty agencies, to credit bureau organizations, to educational and financial institutions, and to agency contractors in order to verify your identity, to determine your program eligibility and benefits, to permit the servicing or collecting of your loan(s), to counsel you in repayment efforts, to investigate possible fraud and to verify compliance with program regulations, or to locate you if you become delinquent in your loan(s) payments or you default.
You must provide all of the information requested in order to have your application processed.
Section 7(b) of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a note) requires that when any federal, state, or local government agency requests an individual to disclose his/her Social Security number, that individual must also be advised whether that disclosure is mandatory or voluntary, by what statutory or other authority the number is solicited, and what uses will be made of it.
Section 7(a)(2) of the Privacy Act provides that an agency may continue to require the disclosure of an individual’s Social Security number where the agency required this disclosure under statute or regulations prior to January 1, 1975, in order to verify the identity of the individual.
Disclosure of your Social Security number is required to participate in the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP). The U.S. Department of Education has, for several years, consistently required the disclosure of individuals’ Social Security numbers on application forms and other necessary FFELP documents adopted pursuant to published regulations.
Your Social Security number will be used to verify your identity, and as an account number (identifier) throughout the life of your loan(s) in order to record necessary data accurately. As an identifier, the Social Security number is used in such program activities as determining your program eligibility, certifying your school attendance and student status, determining your eligibility for deferment of payments, determining your eligibility for disability or death claims, and for tracing and collecting from you in case you become delinquent in your loan payments or you default.
Under the Right to Financial Privacy Act of 1978 (12 U.S.C. 3401-3421), the US Department of Education will have access to financial records in an individual’s student loan file maintained by the lender in compliance with the administration of FFELP loans.
If you apply for a VSAC-assisted scholarship, section 7(b) of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 522a) requires that when any federal, state, or local government agency requests an individual to disclose his/her Social Security number, that individual must also be advised whether that disclosure is mandatory or voluntary, by what statutory or other authority the number is solicited, and what uses will be made of it. Accordingly, scholarship applicants are advised that disclosure of their Social Security numbers is and has been since 1966 a requirement and condition for participation in VSAC-assisted scholarship programs.
VSAC uses the Social Security number of the applicant to identify the applicant, to ensure that information and documents associated with the application are properly entered and filed, to certify attendance and status at college, and to identify a scholarship recipient for disbursing the scholarship.
Section 7(a)(2) of the Privacy Act provides that an agency may continue to require the disclosure of an individual’s Social Security number where the agency required this disclosure under statute or regulations prior to January 1, 1975, in order to verify the identity of the individual. Since 1966, scholarship applicants have been required to provide their Social Security numbers, and all subsequent application forms have required scholarship applicants to provide their Social Security number.